Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Another Dem debate liveblog

You know, debate fatigue is setting in--especially on the Democratic side. They're just not as pander-prone as their GOP counterparts. Anyhow, tonight, the Dems are debating at Drexel.

Like Ted Koppel, Brian Williams seems unable to change his facial expression as he speaks.

Barack is asked about his pledge to be more aggressive against La Hill. It's kinda weird that Barack would accuse her of sounding Republican, given his current chumminess with "ex-gay" Donnie McClurkin. Barack is not sounding too inspiring or eloquent. What are these "sharp contrasts" he speaks of? C'mon, dude, what's going on here? I've liked what he's said in the past--definitely. And he's got points about La Hill.

La Hill rebuts: "I don't think the Republicans got the message that I'm voting with them." She noted the last GOP debate, which was all "Hillary Hillary Hillary" instead of "Reagan Reagan Reagan." Truth to tell, La Hill, like Barack, usually votes on the side of the angels. But that Kyl-Lieberman vote? No, just no.

Now Edwards, talking about how Bush has "destroyed" the relationship between the president and the rest of the world. Edwards calls out La Hill: "She defends a broken system." And of course, he also calls her on Kyl-Lieberman.

Hillary responds by pointing out her record. Could she please explain Kyl-Lieberman?

She brings up fiscal responsibility. Yay Hill. But is this another debate about La Hill?

"Let's start taking the tax cuts away from the wealthy!" she says. Clearly socialistic words to the GOP.

Tim Russert asks her about Kyl-Lieberman. She says, "I'm against a rush to war." She points out when she said Bush had no authority for war. "I am not in favor of doing nothing," she insists. She says the GOP wants a false choice between war and doing nothing and speaks of "vigorous diplomacy." She said it was a show of support for economic sanctions. She said it was a non-binding resolution. But she insists that they're missing the point, which is to stop Bush et al. from pre-emptive war. Don't think I agree with this. Designating the Iranian Revolutionary Guard a terrorist group? No. Just no.

Chris Dodd is correct. It's a dangerous resolution. He points to Cheney's current saber-rattling. And the Republicans who opposed it.

Biden doesn't sound happy with Kyl-Lieberman either. He notes the fact that oil prices went up afterwards. "We've emboldened [Bush]," he said. Wow. Biden is being concise. He's also pissed at the 76 Senators who voted for the thing. He says it contributes to the "urban legend" in the Middle East that the US "is on a crusade against Islam."

At least they're moving away from Hillary-bashing.

Hillary insists that Congress needs to rein in Bush and pushes the "vigorous diplomacy" frame re Iran. "Everything should be on the table, not just their nuclear program....You need both carrots and sticks....I want to start diplomacy."

Edwards steps in re Kyl-Lieberman, saying it "looks like it was written by the neocons."

Russert remembers Richardson's running. He says that he would negotiate with Iran. He points to the moderates in Iran and believes in compromise. He believes in talking to hostile nations (Iran, Syria, North Korea).

Remember Kucinich? He's also running. "I want to know when this Democratic Congress is going to stand up to the president" and impeach the prick. (No, he didn't say "prick.") There's applause. Man, I wish Kucinich was be Speaker of the House.

Dodd points to Pakiston as a problem area. Richardson mentions enriched uranium and loose nukes. He emphasizes diplomacy.

Most of these guys are saying the right thing...except La Hill regarding Kyl-Lieberman.

Kucinich says the media has to be careful regarding frames. Yup, he's a blogger's dream candidate. He'd negotiate with Iran. He'd encourage them to give up nuclear power as well as nuclear weapons.

La Hill says she opposes the war but does NOT oppose the soldiers. When she's president, she'll bring the troops home, so she says.

Obama's done nothing but respond to and critique La Hill. Edwards wants voters "to understand you have choices." Edwards says La Hill is more of the same.

What's the issue here--Iran, Iraq, or Hillary Clinton?

Monday, October 29, 2007

My favorite political cartoon of the year

Courtesy of Ann Telnaes.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Some people just won't go away

Take Li'l Ricky Santorum.

A press conference was held at 1:30 this afternoon at the Philadelphia Inquirer to announce that it has added former Sen. Rick Santorum to its stable of columnists....

The story in the paper today includes: "Talking about the threat of Islamic terrorism is now Santorum's main occupation, though the Republican sounds laid-back these days. He is pitching a movie idea to Hollywood and laughed off speculation about a political comeback in Pennsylvania."

The article explains that he has talked with "Hollywood producer Steve McEveety, who produced the Mel Gibson megahits 'Braveheart' and 'The Passion of the Christ,' on a movie idea that, naturally, has a terrorism element."

Yo. Ricky. If Horrorwitz and Pipes won't speak up about MEK, perhaps you should. Right, Ricky? Erm...Ricky?

***cue sound of chirping crickets***

David Sirota notes the irony of a city paper in a Dem-leaning city hiring a disgraced wingnut as a columnist.

Santorum, you may recall, isn't even from Philadelphia. He was from Western Pennsylvania (I say "was" and not "is" because he actually moved to a wealthy Virginia suburb). But beyond that, you may recall, as Editor & Publisher did, that Santorum "was soundly defeated in his race for re-election last year." In fact, he received just 16 percent of the vote in Philadelphia County - the state's most populous county and the county that is the Inquirer's customer base.

So how can a newspaper like the Philadelphia Inquirer complain about losing readership when, in a major Democratic city, it is providing news analysis from a right-wing Republican who was soundly rejected by voters, who isn't even originally from Philadelphia, and who actually decided to move out of Pennsylvania while representing the state in the U.S. Senate?

Yo! David Horowitz! You there?

Mr. Horowitz and the rest of the maroons behind Islamofascism Awareness Week should be asking a few questions of their right-wing compadres, Daniel Pipes. Specifically, his defense of MEK, a Marxist-Islamofascist terror group. Alternet has more.

Alas, it turns out Pipes isn't the only rightie who's enamored of these goons. Can you say "yet another example of right-wing projection"?

Friday, October 26, 2007

Crybaby conservative alert!

Shit, won't the fundies ever quit whining about evolution? Now, they're making a documentary called Expelled! No Intelligence Allowed and are trying to gather horror stories about mean people who believe in evolution. Sheesh!

Note to all religious fundies: There is a place where your children can read about deities shaping the world to their little hearts' content. It's called...get ready for it...Sunday school. I bet there are a lot of very nice church ladies who believe in intelligent design and would love a chance to teach it to America's youth.

Mean people really, really suck

There's just no nice way to put it. Steve Bates has this bon mot from Texas GOP congresscritter Joe Barton on SCHIP.

You can put lipstick on a pig, but it is still a pig.

He's talking about SCHIP. WTF? What is it that makes Texas Republicans act like utter assholes? Something in the water down there? Is there some evil wizard who's got all them under a spell? Not only are GOP congresscritters mean and nasty, but they're utterly clueless as well. That, or they hate their jobs and they want to lose next year so they can go home and make lots of money in the private sector.

"Lipstick on a pig." Feh.

A really scary thought

Now that Rudy has switched allegiance to the Red Sox, what's next? Will Yosemite Mitt try to one-up "America's Mayor" by showing up at Yankee Stadium for opening day 2008?

Who says Muslim women are weak?

From Newsday comes the story of Hafiz Sahin, a Turkish immigrant who chased off a convenience store robber by waving an ax at him. Ms. Safin is petite and slightly built. She wears the traditional Muslim headscarf. In short, she might seem to fit the stereotype of a docile Muslim woman who's seen and not heard. Guess again.

Kevin Klein, 49, a family friend who also works at the store, said he was not surprised at Sahin's gumption. "I've seen her roughhouse with a friend," he said. "I knew she was tough."

I hate violence, but I gotta love this story. You go, girl!

Please, let this be true!

Have the Senate Dems on the Judiciary Committee come to their senses and realized that, like, torture isn't cool? I know, I know; I've been disappointed before, too. And yes, I call my senators and tell them to vote no on these Bush-kowtowing schmucks. Of course, my senators are Schumer and Clinton, who are pretty liberal. (However, WTF was La Hill thinking when she voted for Kyl-Liberman?)

It's those milquetoast Lieberman wannabes who are frustrating. The ones who don't "get" that Bush and company are a. bad people, b. bad for America, and c. NOT friends of the Democrats. The Dianne Feinsteins and Ben Nelsons, in other words. I'm sick of these idiots.

Don't get me started on "principled" Republicans who cower at the sight of the Chimp. What part of "country before party" don't these morons understand?

As usual, it's up to the Democrats to be big meanies and ask Michael Mukasey the big, big questions about whether he thinks waterboarding is torture. The full rundown is here. Guys? If Mukasey is such a fence-sitter, perhaps he shouldn't be AG. You think?

But maybe the Democrats are thinking along the same lines. Maybe.

A Democrat familiar with the panel’s deliberations said that unless Mukasey is prepared to say that waterboarding is torture, he will not receive the 10 votes on the 19-member committee required for a favorable recommendation to the full Senate.

From the "jokes writing themselves" department

Lynne Spears, mother of Britney, is writing a parenting book.

Religious publisher Thomas Nelson said it will publish "Pop Culture Mom: A Real Story of Fame and Family in a Tabloid World," by Lynne Spears. Nelson spokesman Curt Harding said the book, to be out next spring, will be about Lynne Spears' raising three children and will have a religious element.

There's a religious element to teenage girls dressing in push-up bras for soft-core photos in rock magazines? Who knew?

From the comments section (blame the commenter for the caps/typos):


What kind of dolt thought this was a good idea? Answer: the same kinds of people who think Broadway belters like Ethel Merman were tailor-made for disco.

OW! My poor tummy!

There I was, trying to get this month's horrible Radar cover out of my mind, when Andrew Sullivan alerted his readership to the latest intersection of hardcore porn and stomach-turning bad taste. Make sure you have an empty stomach when you click this link.

Jee-zus. What's next? "Debbie Does Darfur"?

Prog blog time!

It's Family, fronted by the inimitable Roger Chapman. One of those bands that really shoulda been more famous.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Things to be glad for...

When it seems that life has become like a giant, stinky swamp of depression and bad news, never fear. There's always something to smile about.

The Ethel Merman Disco Album is now out on CD.

NJ city council turns Dem

Well, this is wild.

In a rare shift in party affiliation, the entire membership of the all-Republican governing body in Lyndhurst will switch from Republican to Democrat tomorrow. Nearly 60% of Lyndhurst’s Republican County Committee will become Democrats too.

The party realignment, first reported in PoliticsNJ.com last summer, is far greater in scope than speculated. It represents, perhaps, the most massive shift in Party affiliation of elected and Party officials in a single community in one day. “It’s safe to say something like this certainly doesn’t happen in politics everyday,” said Lyndhurst Mayor Richard DiLascio.

Lyndhurst has long been considered a swing town in general elections over the last twenty years.

Not anymore, it isn't.

Franco-pop blogging!

Below, France's pre-eminent ye-ye girl, and a talented songwriter to boot. Yes, it's Francoise Hardy, singing "Ce Petit Couer."

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Delayed AGAIN? C'mon, Pantload, what're you waiting for?

Sad news from the Nation of Wingnutia. Jonah Goldberg's oft-ridiculed and still-unpublished manifesto on liberal fascism has been pushed back yet again--to January 8, 2008. Notes Roger Ailes:

It now comes out on Elvis Presley's birthdate, (and will probably die on the toilet much soon than did the King).

Ha! Obviously, Mommy's money is keeping Doughy Pantload afloat financially and he feels no need to rush this thing. Durig the course of the book's publication, he's been especially creative with subtitles, throwing in names like Hegel, Hillary Clinton, Mussolini, and Whole Foods.

Wait a sec. WHOLE FOODS?!?!?

Anyway, this week the working title for the book is: Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left, From Mussolini to the Politics of Meaning. Awwwwwwww. Why can't he stick Hillary's name in there, like he did in the first place? Or at least throw in Barack Obama. I mean, Obama's middle name is Hussein, after all. Which means he's a dirty Islamofascist. Right, Doughboy?

More intriguing is the new publisher's description:

Liberal Fascism offers a startling new perspective on the theories and practices that define fascist politics. Replacing conveniently manufactured myths with surprising and enlightening research, Jonah Goldberg reminds us that the original fascists were really on the left, and that liberals from Woodrow Wilson to FDR to Hillary Clinton have advocated policies and principles remarkably similar to those of Hitler's National Socialism and Mussolini's Fascism.

Contrary to what most people think, the Nazis were ardent socialists (hence the term “National socialism”). They believed in free health care and guaranteed jobs. They confiscated inherited wealth and spent vast sums on public education. They purged the church from public policy, promoted a new form of pagan spirituality, and inserted the authority of the state into every nook and cranny of daily life. The Nazis declared war on smoking, supported abortion, euthanasia, and gun control. They loathed the free market, provided generous pensions for the elderly, and maintained a strict racial quota system in their universities—where campus speech codes were all the rage. The Nazis led the world in organic farming and alternative medicine. Hitler was a strict vegetarian, and Himmler was an animal rights activist.

Do these striking parallels mean that today’s liberals are genocidal maniacs, intent on conquering the world and imposing a new racial order? Not at all. Yet it is hard to deny that modern progressivism and classical fascism shared the same intellectual roots. We often forget, for example, that Mussolini and Hitler had many admirers in the United States. W.E.B. Du Bois was inspired by Hitler's Germany, and Irving Berlin praised Mussolini in song. Many fascist tenets were espoused by American progressives like John Dewey and Woodrow Wilson, and FDR incorporated fascist policies in the New Deal.

Fascism was an international movement that appeared in different forms in different countries, depending on the vagaries of national culture and temperament. In Germany, fascism appeared as genocidal racist nationalism. In America, it took a “friendlier,” more liberal form. The modern heirs of this “friendly fascist” tradition include the New York Times, the Democratic Party, the Ivy League professoriate, and the liberals of Hollywood. The quintessential Liberal Fascist isn't an SS storm trooper; it is a female grade school teacher with an education degree from Brown or Swarthmore.

Man, I knew there was something seriously creepy about my elementary school--and it wasn't the sixth grade teacher with the bad breath and the lame toupee. On that note, a little homage to Le Pantload and his latest addition to America's book remainder bins.

Kindergarten Uber Alles
(sung to the tune of the Dead Kennedys’ “California Uber Alles”)

Hello kids, I’m Mrs. Brown
What’s your name? We’ll go around
I’m the teacher of this class

Mom and Dad have gone away
Your free lives will end today
Your young minds are not your own
I will make you government drones
I will make you government drones

Kindergarten uber alles!
Kindergarten uber alles!
Uber alles! Kindergarten!
Uber alles! Kindergarten!

Propaganda will be next
Here’s Mein Kampf--it's your new text
Sez the new ruler on the Hill
(Here's a hint: her husband's Bill)

You live in a godless world
Where the boys are just like girls
I'll rid you of Christian taint
So shut up and finger paint
So shut up and finger paint

Kindergarten uber alles!
Kindergarten uber alles!
Uber alles! Kindergarten!
Uber alles! Kindergarten!

Now we’re going to take a nap
You ate lunch, so cut the crap
And I'll hear if some little creep
Mutters "Dick Cheney" in her sleep

Lights are on and one cot's bare
There's a child who's gone, but where?
Well, kids we've received the word
Your young friend has been "transferred"

It’s my job to re-educate
Little enemies of the state
Listen up, you little clowns
To your teacher, Mrs. Brown!
To your teacher, Mrs. Brown!

Kindergarten uber alles!
Kindergarten uber alles!
Uber alles! Kindergarten!
Uber alles! Kindergarten!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Cue Queen's "Another One Bites the Dust" here...

Via The Crone Speaks comes news of the kazillionth retiring Republican. From NYT:

Representative David L. Hobson, a nine-term Republican from Ohio, announced Sunday that he plans to retire. He is the 12th member of his party in the House to do so since the beginning of the year.

“I wanted to go out on top,” said Mr. Hobson, 71.

"Go out on top"? Is this code for "get out of town before another GOP sex scandal hits the papers"? Sorry for making assumptions. I guess I've just got a dirty mind.

Crybaby conservative alert!

Now, it's Larry Craig complaining about Mitt.

"He not only threw me under his campaign bus, he backed up and ran over me again," Craig told NBC's Matt Lauer in an interview taped Sunday set to air later this week on the "Today" show.

Romney, former governor of Massachusetts, called Craig's behavior "disgraceful" and urged the senator to resign when news of the arrest broke in August.

Craig was Romney's Senate liaison before resigning from the campaign.

Romney spokesman Kevin Madden defended the presidential candidate's response. "Gov. Romney simply believes that a public office is a public trust," Madden said. "He believes when a public official enters a guilty plea, they have broken that public trust and should step aside for the sake of their constituents."

At least Craig didn't resign, change his mind, and storm over to the Romney campaign headquarters demanding his old job back.

This has been another installment of "Republicans Turning On Their Own When Their Hypocrisy Is Made Known." (Great rhyme scheme, methinks.)

Craig seems determined to prove himself a boil on the GOP backside. So far, he's doing a good job.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Someone needs to take a chill pill

And check his facts while he's at it.

Pat Buchanan was spitting nails over President Gore's Nobel Peace Prize win. (Per Badtux, that's what I'm going to start calling the guy.) Specifically, he ranted about "Swedish socialists" trying to gain political points. Or something.

There's just one problem. The Nobel Peace Prize is awarded in Norway, not Sweden. The committee that awards the prize is appointed by the Norwegian parliament.


Friday, October 12, 2007

Merle Haggard endorses La Hill, abhors Bush

Oh my.

"The folks don't have a say-so anymore. They're being force-fed—music, yeah, but every other darn thing too. I supported George W. I'm not exactly a liberal. But I know how that Texas thing works, who those oil folks are and what they wanted in Iraq... I'm a born-again Christian too, but the longer I live, the more afraid I get of some of these religious groups that have so much influence on the Republicans and want to tell us how to live our lives....

"This is America. We're proud. We're not afraid of a bunch of terrorists. But this government is all about terror alerts and scaring us at airports. We're changing the Constitution out of fear. We spend all our time looking up each other's dresses. Fear's the only issue the Republican Party has. Vote for them, or the terrorists will win. That's not what Reagan was about. I hate to think about our soldiers over in Iraq fighting for a country that's slipping away."

Via E Plurbius Unum.

I need a new template. SIGH.

I used to have a really pretty template, until NuBlogger decided that it hated the template and I had to replace it. With this. This dull-as-dishwater template. I've been looking into new templates. Preferably nice, clear, attractive, un-sucky templates. I don't want a template with a picture of a celebrity. I don't want something really overdone. I just want a new pretty template.

Anyone know of templates that can be used with NuBlogger? Anyone?

It's Crybaby Conservative Week!

Michelle Malkin has replied to Ezra Klein's debate challenge with squirming and nervous laughter, as the wingnuts' anti-Frost family crusade has been utterly discredited. Ms. Malkin really needs to let go of her obsession. She's hurting her movement by exposing its hypocrisy and general unpleasantness. If this keeps up, they'll start to distance themselves and disavow any association with her. Just like the wingnuts who were shocked--SHOCKED!!!!--that Ann Coulter called John Edwards a faggot. I'm sure that would hurt her feelings and make her cry.

But wait. It's gotten worse. Al Gore has won the Nobel Peace Prize. All that's missing is mass suicide in the Fox News building. A sampling of snit fits.

Chris Smith of Bexley, Ohio
Al Gore? Nobel Peace Prize? Wow, that really degrades my image of that prize. Why not give it to Michael Moore while we're at it? How sad.

Mr. Smith is clearly at a loss for words. Isn't he also supposed to mention Cindy Sheehan, Jimmy Carter, and Howard Dean?

Mark McCord of New Richmond, Wisconsin
This just means the Nobel Peace Prize no longer stands for peace, it stands for propaganda, fear and political agendas.

Note to Mr. McCord: You've confused your 2000 candidates. Bush didn't win the prize. Gore did.

Ryan Kiblinger of Temple, Texas
My heart just broke today. The Nobel Prize went to an individual who consumes many times more than the average person in the world, and more than the average person in the first world. Yet he wins an award for his propaganda with regards to global warming. Al Gore has no scientific expertise for his film and congressional testimony. He is a mere puppet and speculator. The Nobel Peace Prize has lost all credibility today, and for that my heart breaks.

Man, and I thought baseball fans were overemotional.

Finally, there's this thigh-slapper:

Mary Knight of Novato, California
I strongly feel that Mr. Al Gore's nomination and ultimate win was purely political. Before Mr. Gore or Mr. Jimmy Carter, people like Mother Theresa and Princess Diana should receive an award as prestigious as The Nobel Peace Prize once was. I feel that the Nobel Peace Prize has become an insignificant popularity contest. What a sham, what a shame.

Note to Ms. Knight: Mother Theresa did in fact, receive the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979. However, she and Princess Diana are currently ineligible for the prize, having been dead for about ten years.

Look on the bright side, guys. If Li'l Ricky Santorum ever gets around to his dream of becoming a right-wing Michael Moore, maybe he'll win an Oscar.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Firedoglake asks an important question

And the answer is a big fat no.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Purple blogging!

It's 1972, and Purp is somewhere in Asia, performing "Highway Star."

Yes, this really is the best they can do

Awwwwww. Poor widdle wingnuts, upset over a 12-year-old kid.

There's not a lot that can be said over the Graeme Frost witch hunt that hasn't been said before--and in great detail--by dozens of other bloggers. Like here. And here. And here. And especially here. But it really shows how threatened they are now that they realize how unpopular, ineffective, and simply wrong they and their ideas really are.

I mean, really. What a bunch of sad bullies, crying about a tween who dares to talk about how the fact that--gasp!--SCHIP helps people! They don't like that, so the Malkinites and Freepers have gone into total Snidely Whiplash mode on the poor kid and his family. At this point, the Frost family should contact the police about a restraining order against Stalkin' Malkin and the mouth-breather brigade.

Anyway, it's a good thing that the liberal end of the blogosphere is saner than these fruitcakes. Otherwise, someone might, say find the personal information--including addresses, phone numbers, and personal e-mail addresses--for Malkin, Steyn, and leading Freepers. And then maybe this information would be posted all over the lefty blogosphere.

After all, if, as the wingers insist, 12-year-olds are fair game, then surely they themselves are willing to accept the invasion of their own privacy. Like, are these people really earning an honest living or do they just get payouts from Richard Mellon Scaife? How about Canadian-born Steyn? Is he in the USA legally or did his work visa expire? You know, those kinds of personal details. Surely these people have neighbors who'd be happy to talk.

Note: No, I didn't mean what I wrote earlier about digging personal dirty on these cretins. I'm being rhetorical. I'm sure what I just wrote will earn me a spot in Malkin's next book: Super-Unhinged: Never Mind Me, You Mouth-Breathing Suckers, Here's the Moonbats. But really, I'd just be happy to see these guys splattered with pies. That would be enough to send them running away, crying their eyes out.

Even one prominent conservative blogger is disgusted by the wingers' jihad. (Granted, John Cole is a rarity, a conservative who's got brains and a conscience.)

Of course, the "attack-the-messenger-not-the-message" schtick is nothing new among these guys, who know they don't have good ideas and facts. As Avedon Carol wrote last year, after poor, pathetic Ann Coulter embarrassed herself attacking 9/11 widows:

What she is demanding is the right to attack them personally rather than answer their argument. Deprived of the weapon of ad hominem attack, she may be forced to engage what the 9/11 families and the survivors of our military dead, like Cindy Sheehan, are trying to say.

So, since she still can't engage what they are saying, she is complaining that they are saying it at all. She has been given ample opportunity to answer the question Cindy Sheehan has been asking for these many months, but she can't. She cannot even explain why she objects to the 9/11 families' campaign for a full investigation of our inexplicable vulnerability on 11 September 2001.

What she wants is not, as she claims, someone she "can" respond to, but that the questions never be asked. Only "liberals", she wants us to believe, would ask them. Yet these people, who obviously have a much more personal reason for asking them that owes nothing to their political philosophy, are throwing a wrench into the works of her argument.

And that's the same story here. The wingnuts have seen proof that Dear Leader's SCHIP veto would hurt deserving families like the Frosts. And it sounds like these are hardworking people. Heck, Graeme Frost is a scholarship student at a private school, which means he's one smart kid.

Smarter than the wingnuts, that's for sure.

They've been outclassed and outsmarted by a 12-year-old. No wonder they've lost their minds.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Tweety on FIRE! Try not to laugh...

Is it me, or is Chris Matthews the Mitt Romney of the punditocracy? Since when has Tweety been a gung-ho Bushco critic? I'm curious.

Chris Matthews had barely finished praising his colleagues at the 10th anniversary party for his “Hardball” show Thursday night in Washington, D.C. when his remarks turned political and pointed, even suggesting that the Bush administration had "finally been caught in their criminality."

In front of an audience that included such notables as Alan Greenspan, Rep. Patrick Kennedy and Sen. Ted Kennedy, Matthews began his remarks by declaring that he wanted to "make some news" and he certainly didn't disappoint. After praising the drafters of the First Amendment for allowing him to make a living, he outlined what he said was the fundamental difference between the Bush and Clinton administrations.

The Clinton camp, he said, never put pressure on his bosses to silence him.

“Not so this crowd,” he added, explaining that Bush White House officials -- especially those from Vice President Cheney's office -- called MSNBC brass to complain about the content of his show and attempted to influence its editorial content. "They will not silence me!" Matthews declared.

"They've finally been caught in their criminality," Matthews continued, although he did not specify the exact criminal behavior to which he referred. He then drew an obvious Bush-Nixon parallel by saying, “Spiro Agnew was not an American hero."

Matthews left the throng of Washington A-listers with a parting shot at Cheney: “God help us if we had Cheney during the Cuban missile crisis. We’d all be under a parking lot.”

You tell 'em, Tweety. *snerk* As soon as you explain your chumminess with Tom DeLay and assorted other thugs.

I've got to find a YouTube clip of Tweety vs. Jon Stewart. Meanwhile, there's always The Many Man-Crushes of Chris Matthews for your reading enjoyment.

Sue me. This is funny.

Ladies and gentlemen...Starbuck's new Britney-themed drink: the Mess-o-cino.

Speaking of Britney, it seems her new video for "Gimme More" isn't much better than her VMA performance. From People, one of the few magazines to continuously kiss her butt, comes a collection of negative reviews. Which in turn, leads to this assessment from my favorite entertainment mag, Entertainment Weekly.

The moral of the story is, if you're going to build an entire video around a stripper pole, then you better work said pole like a nine-to-five. Drop it like it's hot. Throw a leg up over your head. Hire one of the elegant ladies of HBO's G-String Divas, and have her teach you that daring move where you hang upside down by your legs and spin with reckless abandon. Alas, in the case of "Gimme More," I've seen sexier pole work during an afternoon of fly-fishing.

Groovin' to Feist

Well, I finally brought the whole album today. As Temple Stark helpfully notes, I could've bought the thing on iTunes. Someday, when I get off my lazy butt and upgrade to DSL/cable, I will be able to download whole albums relatively quickly. And someday, I'll be able to go without album covers, credits, and neat album packaging. Until then, I still have a soft spot for CDs. Especially considering how many records are really obscure and hard to find and probably nowhere to be found online.

That said, I still download MP3 files from iTunes and my personal favorite download site: eMusic. eMusic offers downloads from independent labels only. And, of course, the selection is phenomenal. Classic soul? British folk? Old school punk? New indie bands? They're all on eMusic.

Meanwhile the majors continue their descent into obsolescence. Glen Gamboa notes that Feist and Ingrid Michaelson found exposure via TV commercials for iPods and Old Navy, respectively. Twenty years ago, they would've branded as sellouts by assorted cranks like critic like Dave Marsh. But since radio sucks and music video channels are more interested in reality TV programming, artists have to look elsewhere for their songs to be heard.

These days, when I think of Britney Spears, she seems more and more like an artifact--the music-industry equivalent of an actress from in Old Hollywood. Along with the boy bands, she was a classic example of top-down success. Contrast to Clap Your Hands Say Yeah! and Feist, who started with grassroots support and worked their way up. In that way, the Internet has become the great equalizer in the music industry. Perhaps, more and more artists will bypass American Idol and take their careers into their own hands. It would certainly be preferable to facing a snarling Brit and a onetime Laker girl with no singing talent.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Why why WHY?

This morning, I turned on the TV, and both MTV and VH1 were playing the same Nickelback song at the same time. It's that godawful new song about wanting to be a rock star, and it consists of a bunch of random people all mouthing the words to the song (with a few actual rock stars like Kid Rock deigning to appear). This is not the first time both channels have played this video at the same time.

The question is: WHY? Can't they play more of that fun Feist video, "1234"? It's a good song and a really colorful yet simple video. It's featured in a bunch of iPod commercials. If iPod starts using Nickelback in its ads, I'm going to take my iPod and throw it out the window, I swear.

Anyway, I went to Borders to get the new Feist album and it appears to be sold out. Sigh.

They'll have a gay old time!

It had to happen. The same week that Larry Craig announces that he is not in fact resigning, a Republican group takes on one of the GOP's most obvious flip-floppers.

I'm talking, of course, about Yosemite Mitt.

Yes, the party's most unintentionally hilarious candidate is now the subject of a TV ad placed by the GOP's leading masochists gay and lesbian advocacy group, the Log Cabin Republicans. I knew that these guys existed, but wondered where they were hiding during this election cycle. (For the curious: no, Larry Craig is not a member.)

Anyway, the ad can be accessed via the NY Times linky and features clips of Mitt talking like a total liberal. Wow. I wondered when the LCR's would finally snap. Especially considering Mitt's, uh, confusing views on gay rights. Basically, he was always a flip-flopper, even when he was governor. He promised the Massachusetts LCR's that he'd uphold the state court's ruling that upheld gay marriage. Then he supported an amendment to ban it. And, of course, he also supports the Federal Marriage Amendment. No wonder the LCR's are pissed.

From the comments section in the first linky:

Yes! A Federal Marriage Amendment! As a gay man, I fully support a federal amendment to our constitution which prohibits Mormons from marrying. Anything less undermines the sanctity of marriage!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Okay, something's up here

This is the fifth Senate Republican to retire. After seven years of rubber-stamping every crappy decision Bush has ever made, it must be burnout city for Republicans in Congress.

2008 can't come soon enough.

Something to make fundies mad

They're now naming asteroids after gay people.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

John McCain does the impossible!

Yes, he's brought Jews and Muslims together. From the Daily News:

Jewish groups lined up with Arab and Muslim organizations yesterday to hammer Sen. John McCain for calling the U.S. a "Christian nation" that should have a Christian President.

McCain's remarks were "disappointing and disturbing to say the least," said Abraham Foxman, director of the Anti-Defamation League. He called on the Arizona Republican to retract them.

"Absolutely nothing in the Constitution establishes that the U.S. is a Christian nation," Foxman said, "nor is it accurate to say that this nation was founded on Christian principles."

Naturally, Joe Lieberman defends the guy. And meanwhile, James Zogby (head of the Arab-American Institute) has the best quote about McCain: "Cheney without of the nuance." OUCH!!!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Y'know, maybe I should listen to more Radiohead

I love it when any band can make major label executives squirm. More here.

Radiohead has now officially announced this new self-released album, 'In Rainbows' which will be available on October 10. Initially, the album will only be available as an electronic download through the Web site InRainbows.com. Later, it will be pressed and made available as a massive and expensive (£40, or $81.18) box set that includes three copies of the album: one on vinyl, one on CD and the previously available all-digital version.

Believe it or not, Radiohead is asking fans to name their own price for the downloadable version. Pre-order the album for an October 10th download and at checkout you are asked to enter whatever price you feel is appropriate. Seriously. Wanna pay a penny? Then do it. Wanna throw a little more cash at the band? Donate $10 or $20 -- it's up to you.

Over at Velvet Rope, plenty of posters are pretty psyched not only about the album but the marketing/distribution aspect. It's the end of the music industry as they know it, and they're feeling fine.

I HOPE this guy's right

Seeing the Forest addresses pissed-off Dems(and there are lots of those out there--including yours truly):

Lots of people are really upset that the House and Senate voted to censure MoveOn. Me, too. There is a LOT of talk about "quitting the party" to "send a message."

There is a problem with that thinking. Ralph Nader ran in 2000 to "send a message" to "the Democrats." It didn't send a message and got maybe half a million Iraqis killed. Maybe more.

The reason it did not "send a message" was that the Democratic Party is not a top-down organization. It is a bottom-up organization. IT IS US. You don't "send a message" to yourself, you ACT. The way to act on this is to show up at party meetings, vote, run for office and take over the party. It is also to fund outside organizations like Commonweal Institute so they can reach the public, create popular understanding and appreciation of, and demand for, progressive values and ideas, and turn them around from this nightmare we're living under.

I hate to sound like a broken record, but the righties didn't desert the GOP fold after Goldwater got trounced. They dug in for the long haul. So I have to roll my eyes at the folks floating the Greens as a viable third party. Especially when their candidates, like Nader, receive checks from Republicans.

Anyone have better ideas? I don't.